Mili Note: .. “And then by men we trusted, this land of ours was sold. They sold our friends to enemies, as Judas did of old.” .. “Hear we not the voice of Connolly, the worker’s soldier friend? ‘The conquered soul asserts itself. And we shall rise again!'”
This one is shaping up pretty much the way we predicted. Ireland’s Fine Gael party enticed voters a couple of weeks ago with their tough talk about giving haircuts to bank bondholders and renegotiating Ireland’s IMF “bailout,” but before they’ve even taken power, the new Fine Gael-Labor coalition government has already capitualted to the IMF and European banksters. In spite of all the pre-election talk, the new government plans to follow the original bailout and austerity plans with hardly any modification whatsoever.
The Irish Independent is already referring to this about face as “voter betrayal” and “the most barefaced breach of election promises ever perpetrated by an incoming Government.”
For example, the government still plans to go hat in hand to the EU and IMF for a reduction in the interest rate on the 85B Euro loan from the IMF, but this will amount to nothing more than a cosmetic change in the bailout terms. As for all those threats to bank bondholders, now they’re saying that new “legislation may be necessary” before they can consider applying haircuts. If they’re showing this kind of weakness already, then they can’t expect to have much leverage with the EU and IMF when they meet later this month. From the EU/IMF standpoint, why negotiate with someone who is already willing to give you everything you want?
And any renegotiation of the bailout that does occur won’t even take effect for years. For the moment, it’s onward with higher taxes and “austerity” in public services. Again from the Independent:
Yesterday, however, a well-placed Fine Gael source did not even attempt to disguise the fact that the new programme for government represents a rip-off of the outgoing Government’s four-year plan as signed off on by the EU-IMF.
“Yes, we are going to have to stick with the four-year plan, at least for two or three years, and maybe even go further and deeper than the austerity measures envisaged in that plan,” he said. “There is no getting away from that. I cannot deny it.
“The country is banjaxed, worse than we ever imagined. We have no choice.”
So much for effecting change by means of the ballot box. And so much for learning the lessons of Iceland. It is simply unconscionable that Irish politicians are still pretending that Ireland’s economy can withstand higher taxes, reduced public services, reduced wages and pensions — on top of an 85B Euro IMF “bailout.” Yet here they are, bravely and stoically resigning themselves to the inevitable. What crap.
There is no way the Irish people will stand for this. Stay tuned.